Zoo Life

How else would you define us but a zoo:
this ragged attempt to appear socially fit?

I drag my children with me, expectations
formed from still life exhibits, picture –

perfect cameos of happy lives, poised
as any good television family might…

Who hasn’t had a rough ride, disembarked
and vowed never to repeat sins?  Hold on

to what you have kids, I warn; be wary of
life:  it’s what I’ve learned – tried to change

the tableau, inject creativity into freeze
frames; snared in webs of my weaving,

like the black widow entrapping my prey,
instinct releasing venom, plots spiralling

out of control; am prepared to wipe clean
the past, but stumble, lose grip, shamed

beg my daughters to look away, too late,
tension mounts, threaten to consume us

our dreams, the source of our imaginations
and I listen to the screams, helpless, until

one child takes up the cry, offers herself,
as I would have once, forces me to sit by,

worry my only companion, while she sinks
deeper into the hell of this artificially caged

confine; our connection lost – unprepared
am I, with all the wrong resources, clinging

to damnable passivity, alone, wretched,
guilt-ridden, afraid for generations unborn –

and as I turn away, in despair, I catch sight
of her, my child, revelling in her story, vital –

no crisis – just a brilliant young woman,
unbound by the restraints of this zoo.

(Image: obutecodanet.ig.com.br)

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